Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers today appeared in Kenosha to announce Neighborhood Investment Fund grants that will support two major projects in Kenosha County.
$9.85 million was awarded to Kenosha County to support the relocation of its Human Services functions from the Job Center building at 8600 Sheridan Road to a facility to be developed in the Sun Plaza shopping center at 52nd Street and 30th Avenue.
A $15 million grant will aid the City of Kenosha in its planned Kenosha Innovation Neighborhood (KIN) redevelopment of the former Chrysler manufacturing site.
“I want to thank Governor Evers and his team for helping to strengthen this project with these much-needed funds," Kenosha County Executive Jim Kreuser said, of the county award. "This will result in bringing our Human Services closer to thousands and thousands of people we serve, and it will be a boost to area businesses and the whole neighborhood around it.”
The Kenosha grants were announced in a news conference held at the Kenosha Human Development Services headquarters, next door to the future Human Services Building site. They were a portion of nearly $213 million in Neighborhood Investment Fund grants announced statewide.
Gov. Evers' news release on the awards:
KENOSHA — Gov. Tony Evers today announced more than $212.9 million has been awarded statewide through the Neighborhood Investment Fund Grant program to address the needs of communities through long-term investments and economic recovery projects.
“From Rice Lake to Kenosha, our Neighborhood Investment Fund is providing support to address a variety of community needs, and whether its affordable housing, area revitalization, or improving the access and delivery of public services, these projects will be transformational in the daily lives of the folks who call these neighborhoods home,” said Gov. Evers. “Over the last week, I’ve had the pleasure of visiting with grant recipients all across the state, and the dedication, ingenuity, and passion folks have demonstrated through their creative proposals is proof that these grant dollars are building a foundation for a brighter future for Wisconsinites.”
Following his visits with recipients in Beloit, Milwaukee, and Madison last week and his stop in Rice Lake earlier this week, Gov. Evers today visited recipients in Kenosha, Fond du Lac, and Green Bay to highlight several of the projects receiving funds in those communities. The city of Kenosha is receiving a $15 million grant to develop an Innovation Center that will focus on support for entrepreneurs and startups and provide educational and training opportunities. The governor proposed support for the Innovation Center in his 2021-23 biennial budget, but the measure was ultimately removed from the final budget by the Legislature. Kenosha County will also receive a grant of more than $9.8 million for the relocation of the Kenosha County Job Center to ensure services are more accessible in the community.
Additionally, during his visit in Fond du Lac, the governor will highlight several regional projects. The city of Fond du Lac will receive a $3.6 million grant, the city of Menasha will receive a more than $2 million grant, the city of Neenah will receive a more than $4.3 million grant, and Winnebago County will receive a more than $10 million grant to support an array of proposals that address local housing needs, improvements to a local senior care facility, and a comprehensive community redevelopment initiative.
Finally, while in Green Bay, the governor will highlight projects receiving funds, including a $5 million grant for the city of Green Bay to support new housing opportunities and a multi-purpose community development site, as well as a $4.7 million grant for Ashwaubenon to support the development of the Berkshire Ashwaubenon, an affordable housing initiative that will provide 75 new, affordable units. Brown County will also receive a $15 million grant to redevelop facilities at the old Pulliam Power Plant site to allow for the long-awaited relocation of the C. Reiss coal piles. Brown County has already committed to buy the Pulliam site with the help of a $500,000 grant from the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation. In May 2021, the governor proposed support for the relocation of the C. Reiss coal piles in his special session call to expand BadgerCare, but the measure was ultimately rejected by Republicans in the Legislature. Relocating the coal will remove a barrier to neighborhood revitalization and a hazard to the environment and public health, improving air and water quality and overall quality of life for residents, while infrastructure improvements and updates at the site will provide a positive economic benefit to the area.
Part of a nearly $650 million investment allocated by the governor for community building and recovery efforts statewide, the Neighborhood Investment Fund program was announced in August 2021 and is administered by the Wisconsin Department of Administration (DOA). Grants awarded range in size from $1 million to a maximum of $15 million and are funded through the American Rescue Plan Act. Applications opened on Sept. 30, 2021, and closed on Nov. 11, 2021. A full list of grant awardees and additional information can be found on the program website.
“A strong recovery means investing for the future, and ensuring that our communities lead the way,” said DOA Secretary-designee Kathy Blumenfeld. “With the Neighborhood Investment Fund, we are able to support revitalization efforts, address shelter and housing needs, and make a real, lasting impact for our communities.”
Wisconsinites can visit BadgerBounceback.wi.gov to view pandemic-related assistance information for families, farmers, businesses, organizations, and communities, as well as the latest data and success stories about how COVID-relief investments are making a difference across the state. For updates on other recovery-related grant opportunities, sign up for the Badger Bounceback update list.